Monday, Nov 23, 2009-m4wYou were wearing a green dress with white buttons. We made eye contact at least three times on the 6 train this morning. All of a sudden you have a little secret smile and looked down at your lap, as though at some secret joke. You never looked up again and I had to get off at Bleeker. I wish I could have seen inside your beautiful head.
Craving - an intense, urgent, or abnormal desire, or longing for some particular thing. We all have cravings whether it's for life, love, or even food. But whatever it is, it reveals an emptiness you never knew you had until you recognized it. It can attack at any time, without a single warning, but it won't go away until it's been satisfied. You can't fool it, or provide a substitute to try and appease or divert it. Cravings are clever because they are rooted in our psyche, our hearts, and sometimes even our souls. At its worst, cravings can become addictions. When satisfied they can give you a feeling of euphoria, fleeting but engulfing. But whatever your achilles heel, more often than not cravings disguise a deeper absence of something else, something less tangible. The only way to beat cravings is to recognize it for what it truly is, and not what we need it to be for the immediate gratification. I think cravings are "an appetite for life", born out of a need for connections with ourselves, others, and the world around us. To feel a part of something, of belonging, of mattering.
One of my favorite blogs is Sophie Blackall's MissedConnections who illustrates the random interactions of strangers in New York City and their quests to reconnect via Craigslist. She believes that "everyday hundreds of strangers reach out to other strangers on the strength of a glance, a smile or a blue hat. Their messages have the lifespan of a butterfly. I'm trying to pin a few of them down."
Tuesday, Oct 6, 2009-m4w (L train to Manhattan)You were reading Catch-22 on the subway this morning. I have never seen such a beautiful profile. I wanted to say hi, but then you'd turn towards me and I wouldn't be able to look at your profile anymore. You were so into your book, I don't think you noticed me falling in love with you. But I thought I'd ask, just in case.
Saturday, Oct 17 2009-m4wWe shared a bear suit at an apartment party on Saturday night. I asked for your number and you gave it to me, but somehow I don't have an area code written down. I had a great time talking with you, and I don't trust Chance enough to wait until I see you in the elevators...
Wednesday, March 18, 2009-m4mHow come no-one ever "misses" me?
Last week a friend forwarded me a link to the Los Angeles Times food section featuring Momofuku's Crack Pie. Momofuku Bakery & Milk Bar is an East Village joint in Manhattan that churns out desserts for both restaurants and the public. Apparently Crack Pie is flying out the door in New York City at $44 a pie. I couldn't help but wonder what a $44 pie taste like. So I spent President's Day testing out the recipe, baking in my tiny, hot kitchen in 70° + weather. It felt like summer, not that I'm complaining. As I skimmed the recipe it looked like a variation on Chess Pie, a standby Southern dessert made with eggs butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla. It's also related to vinegar pie, minus the vinegar which cuts the sweetness. Milk Bar pastry chef Christina Tosi's Crack Pie starts with a homemade oat cookie crust pressed into a pie plate, and an addition of milk powder and heavy cream to the custard "base" to give it body. The dessert is served chilled with a dust of powdered sugar.
The following adapted Momofuku recipe was printed in the Los Angeles Times. It makes (2) 10-inch pies. Please note that if using 9-inch pie plates, the increased thickness of the fillings require additional baking time of about 5 minutes. Warning: this is a very sugary sweet dessert.
Momofuku's Crack Pie
2 prepared cookie crusts (*recipe below)
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup plus a scant 3 tbsp light brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup plus 1 tsp milk powder
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
3/4 cup plus a scant 2 tbsp heavy cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
8 egg yolks
powdered sugar, garnish
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, brown sugar, salt, and milk powder. Whisk in the melted butter, then whisk in the heavy cream and vanilla.
- Gently whisk in the egg yolks, being careful not to add too much air.
- Divide the filling evenly between the 2 prepared pie shells.
- Bake the pies, one at a time, for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 325° F and bake until the filling is slightly jiggly and gold brown (similar to a pecan pie), about 10 minutes. Remove the pies and cool on a rack. *Note: You will fear the pies are undercooked, but don't worry, it'll be fine.
- Refrigerate the cooled pies until well chilled. The pies are meant to be served cold, and the filling will be gooey. Dust with powdered sugar before serving.
Oat Cookie for pie crust
2/3 cup plus 1 tbsp flour
scant 1/8 tsp baking powder
scant 1/8 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) soften butter
1/3 cup light brown sugar
3 tbsp sugar
scant 1 cup rolled oats
- Preheat oven to 375° F.
- In a medium bowl, sift together the flour baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- With the paddle attachment of a stand mixer, or an electrical mixer, beat the butter, brown sugar and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Whisk the egg into the butter mixture until fully incorporated.
- With the mixer running, beat in the flour mixture, a little at a time, until fully combined. Stir in the oats until incorporated.
- Spread the mixture onto a 9-inch by 13-inch baking sheet and bake until golden brown and set, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and cool to the touch. Crumble the cooled cookie to use in the crust.
Oat Cookie Pie Crust
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1 1/2 tbsp brown sugar
1/8 tsp salt
- Combine the crumbled cookie, butter, brown sugar and salt in a food processor and pulse until evenly combined and blended (a little of the mixture clumped between your fingers should hold together.)
- Divide the crust between 2 (10-inch) pie plates. Press the crust into each shell to form a thin, even layer along the bottom and sides of the plates. Set the prepared crusts aside while you prepare the filling.